Best horror movies: scary films to stream or buy in 2018 …

You’ve arrived at TechRadar’s list of the scariest movies to stream right now, so strap in tight.

When putting together our best horror movies list, the same question kept coming up: what makes a good horror movie?

For us, a good horror movie is one that latches onto your deepest, primal fears, pokes and prods at your psyche, strangles you with fear, raises your heart rate to palpitation levels, and then some.

These types of horror movies are rare, and that’s what makes them so special. Read on to see some classics of the genre.

The following is a hand-picked list of the best horror movies on Netflix and Amazon Prime Video you should no, need to watch right now.

All these Netflix and Amazon titles will induce fear, but as you’ll see, fear takes different forms: sometimes it’s foreboding, sometimes it’s mixed with comedy, other times it’s bloody and brutal.

And then there’s that other fear: the fear that you have missed off some damn good movies from a list.If that’s the case, then let us know.

Every secret will be revealed

Date: 2015 | Director: Gregory Plotkin | Stars: Chris J. Murray, Brit Shaw, Ivy George | Certificate: 15 | Runtime: 88 min

Great addition to the series

Some brilliant scares

CGI is a touch ropey

3D is a gimmick

The final part of the Paranormal Activity series may not have quite the effect the initial movies had but it’s still packed with scares. The plot is slight a couple find a camera in their new house that allows them to see paranormal activity around them and use this to protect their daughter. With more of an onus on the ghosts rather than the unseen, the scares aren’t as plentiful, but it’s still a fun watch. And if you find yourself wanting more, the rest of the series is also available on Netflix.

Watch on Netflix now

Don’t answer the phone. Don’t open the door. Don’t try to escape.

Date: 1996 | Director: Wes Craven | Stars: Neve Campbell, Courteney Cox, David Arquette | Certificate: 15 | Runtime: 111 min

Brilliant postmodern plot

Redefined horror movies

Started many a copycat

Dated slightly

Perhaps the most influential horror film of the last 20 years, Scream is a delight for horror fans. It manages to subvert the genre by playing on the stereotypes seen in a horror movie and at the same time make new rules for horror films. And the best thing about it is that We Craven is at the helm one of the original horror masters proving at the time he was still the best in the game.

Watch Scream on Amazon Prime Video now

Mommy, Daddy, where are you?

Date: 1982 | Director: Tobe Hooper | Stars: JoBeth Williams, Heather O’Rourke, Craig T. Nelson | Certificate: 15 | Runtime: 114 min

Genuine scares

One of the genre’s classics

The plot is messy

The argument over who directed Poltergeist was pretty much put to rest recently when Tobe Hooper passed away and an assistant on the movie revealed that Stephen Spielberg was mainly at the helm. To be honest, it doesn’t matter as the result is a film full of classic scares and chills and essential viewing if you have yet to see it.

Watch on Amazon Prime Video now

Now… open your eyes to…

Date: 1973 | Director: William Friedkin | Stars: Ellen Burstyn, Max von Sydow, Linda Blair | Certificate: 18 | Runtime: 122 min

One of the best horror movies ever

Utterly terrifying

It puts other horror movies to shame

The greatest horror movie ever made deserves all of the accolades it gets. It’s a superb chiller based around the exorcism of a little girl. Its world building, shocking scenes and fantastic acting makes everything about The Exorcist horrifically believable. You will go to bed with the lights on after watching this.

Watch The Exorcist on Amazon Prime Video now

Even nice people can go to hell

Date: 2009 | Director: Sam Raimi | Stars: Alison Lohman, Justin Long, Ruth Livier | Certificate: 15 | Runtime: 99 min

Frenetic and fun horror movie

Doesn’t let up

Sometimes too silly

A bit predictable

Drag Me To Hell sees director Sam Raimi on fine form, taking everything he learned from making the Evil Dead movies and distilling them into this horror farce, about a woman who is unwittingly put under a supernatural curse. Raimi has always been the boss of frenetic horror movies and Drag Me To Hell is of no exception. Once it starts, it simply does not let up.

Watch Drag Me To Hell on Amazon Prime Video

The perfect comedy and horror mix

Date: 1981 | Director: John Landis | Stars: David Naughton, Jenny Agutter, Joe Belcher | Certificate: 18 | Runtime: 97 min

Great mix of horror and comedy

Super ‘of their time’ effects

Horror/comedy mix too much for some

A cult classic and for good reason, American Werewolf in London is everything you want in a horror film. It has for its time amazing special effects, a great big dollop of gore and some brilliant humour. The plot is as simple as it gets, two American backpackers travelling the shires of England get attacked by a werewolf and, well, the title gives the rest away.

Watch An American Werewolf in London on Amazon Prime Video

Some games you play. Some you survive.

Date: 2017 | Director: Mike Flanagan | Stars: Carla Gugino, Carel Struycken, Bruce Greenwood | Certificate: 15 | Runtime: 103 min

Fantastic, unique storytelling

Superb central performance

Ending feels rushed

Quite melodramatic

Gerald’s Game is a lean Stephen King novel. Most of the action takes place in one room, with one poor woman (Jessie Burlingame) alone, handcuffed to a bed, after a night of passion goes awry, with just her thoughts, her dead husband, and a number of things that go bump in the night for company. It’s superb then that director Mike Flannigan has managed to pull off an adaptation that could have been very one note, by creatively bringing the thoughts of Burlingame (a fantastic Carla Gugino) to life. It’s a bit too melodramatic at times and does suffer from the King curse of never knowing how to properly end his stories, but there’s a lot to like about this Netflix exclusive.

Date: 2014 | Director: Jennifer Kent | Stars: Essie Davis, Noah Wiseman, Hayley McElhinney | Certificate: 15 | Runtime: 93 min

Harrowing and thought provoking

Not just about jump shocks

Not enough ‘horror’ for some

Too heavy handed in places

The horror of the Babadook, a brilliant debut by director Jennifer Kent, lies in its subtlety. The plot revolving around a creepy bedtime book is secondary to the fraught relationship between widowed Amelia (Essie Davis) and her six-year-old son Samuel (Noah Wiseman). It plays on the usual fear-inducing tropes but the real horror of the movie is seeing a family in grief and the devastating sadness that accompanies this.

Date: 2014 | Director: Jennifer Kent | Stars: Essie Davis, Noah Wiseman, Hayley McElhinney | Certificate: 15 | Runtime: 93 min

Some genuine scares

Great cast

The ending gets a little silly

Not the most original of horrors

Director James Wan cut his teeth and many other limbs with Saw, which is fun but forgettable. Insidious feels like a much more grown-up horror movie, that eschews blood for Poltergeist-style japes. Patrick Wilson and Rose Byrne are husband and wife who are looking after their coma-induced son. Some great cinematography makes up for a plot that does annoyingly veer into supernatural territory near the end. Despite this, there’s a lot of fun to be had.

Something is after Jessica. Something very dead.

Date: 1971 | Director: John Hancock | Stars: Zohra Lampert, Barton Heyman, Kevin O’Connor | Certificate: 18 | Runtime: 89 min

Superb dream-like feel

Great build up of dread

Might be too slow for some

Not much actually happens

One of the most overlooked horror movies of all time, this is a wonderful hidden slice of ’70s horror. Shot through a dream-like lens, the movie follows a group of mates looking to find solace for their friend Jessica, who has just been released from a clinic. After a road trip they end up shacking up in an empty house that comes complete with a stranger called Emily. Full of subtle scares, marvellous missteps and lingering shots, Let’s Scare Jessica To Death is a must watch.

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Best horror movies: scary films to stream or buy in 2018 …

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Reviewed and Recommended by Erik Baquero
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